tralac Daily News
The Department of Tourism says that it wants to introduce a vaccine passport for South Africa. Still, several international and legislative hurdles need to be addressed.
“Even in some jurisdictions that have opted to apply this (passport), there isn’t yet a sense of uniformity. When we don’t have a single, standardised specimen, it is a little bit difficult to say which one is which. “If South Africa introduces (a passport), and there is access to information from the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) that confirms that a person has been vaccinated, the question is if that person arrives Lagos (Nigeria), what resources will they use to verify this information that is stored on a database in South Africa?”
He said that the government was also cautious about introducing a vaccine passport system that is discriminatory against certain groups of people. “When we reopen, and when everyone is starting to travel, it should not be discriminatory. And that principle has been reiterated time and time again.”
KRA gazettes Nairobi inland depot road a customs route (Business Daily)
The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has gazetted the Cabanas- Nairobi Inland Container Depot (ICDN)-Southern Bypass road as a route for custom goods transiting Kenya. The designation of the area is set to reduce the time it takes truck drivers to clear their goods with customs department. Trucks are required to use designated routes while transporting goods to avoid penalties.
The designation of the new customs area will provide drivers with an alternative route that will save them distance travelled and penalties. Kenya’s customs clearance is known for long delays, forcing traders to incur huge costs.
Our development model is fine, graft is the spoiler (Business Daily)
There have been very interesting and welcome debates about what Kenya’s development model is and what it should be going forward. This is welcome because national development is a dynamic process that shifts with evolving human and national needs, changing demographics, and new knowledge/ technologies. Manifestos for parties aspiring to form new governments essentially aim at realigning development priorities to address specific needs of the time, and this is why five-year development plans and longer-term plans and visions have always been prepared.
What has also not changed and is unlikely to change is that rapid development is achieved when individual and community efforts are enabled by appropriate policies, regulations, relevant skills, efficient local and national value chain systems, and facilitative infrastructure. All these plus private sector partnerships.
Going forward national development should be a well lubricated partnership between the national government, county governments and private sector players, all targeting to increase national productivity and wealth. This way Kenyans will have an opportunity to participate and share in the form of grassroots production, enterprises, and employment. Productive sectors (agriculture, mining, manufacturing, SMEs) and general commerce have the greatest development multiplier effects. These should be prioritised and supported with equitable budgetary allocations, enabling regulatory frameworks and facilitative infrastructure. This is in addition to socio-infrastructure (education, health, recreation) which enhance the quality of lives.
Senior Presidential Advisor, Mr. Yaw Osafo-Maafo, has urged industries to reposition themselves to tap into the opportunities presented by the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to ensure Ghana becomes the centre of industrial establishments in Africa. He said the establishment of the AfCFTA Secretariat in Ghana presented a bigger market to local industries which they must exploit by targeting markets within the continent to help put Ghana on the map as an industrial country. That, he indicated, would help strengthen the national currency and reduce the high unemployment rate which had become a national security concern.
ZITF 2021 Postponed Again To September (NewZimbabwe.com)
THE 2021 edition for the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) initially slated for 20 – 23 July has been postponed to the 21 to 24 September, organisers have said.
This year’s edition is running under the theme ‘Showcasing the New Normal For Business and Industry: Realities and Opportunities’ However, in a statement, the ZITF board chairperson Busisa Moyo said the move was due to the extension of the national Level 4 lockdown by the government last Wednesday.
Northern Corridor gets $4.4m for trade projects (The East African)
The Northern Corridor secretariat has a $4.4 million budget for the 2021/2022 financial year to implement and complete pending projects, as was approved by the Council of Ministers recently. The budget, passed at the 33rd meeting, was recommended by the executive committee as the Corridor reports inefficiencies and challenges in achieving its full potential in promoting intra-regional trade and integration. Some of the key programmes still pending include the establishment of the $700 million Road Side Stations (RSS), developing conformity testing laboratories to improve efficiency along the Corridor and implementation of uniform levies as agreed on in 2015 in Kinshasa.
Lamu port plans to set up berths for special cargo (Business Daily)
The Port of Lamu will open dedicated berths to handle specialised cargo as the facility seeks to attract more business from the region. The move will see the recently commissioned port construct specifics berths for specialised products such as agriculture goods, livestock and crude oil. The port as planned, said Kenya Ports Authority acting chief executive officer John Mwangemi will not only serve the transshipment market, but all kinds of cargo destined for the hinterland and transit markets as already demonstrated. “As part of diversification of the port, there are plans to develop specialised berths to handle Agri-bulk, livestock, crude oil among other specialised products,” said Mr Mwangemi.
Goods imported from India can now bypass tight security checks at the port after the Asian country and the East African Community (EAC) entered into a Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA).The MRA will benefit companies under the Authorised Economic Operators (AEO) Programme run by the EAC Partner States and coordinated by the EAC Secretariat since 2008.AEO is a preferential customs clearing programme that allows trusted customs clients to enjoy quick clearance on their consignments as the goods are not subjected to physical examination, except for random or risk-based interventions, hence saving on time and cost.
The AEO concept is derived from the World Customs Organisation (WCO) SAFE Framework of Standards, an instrument that was adopted by the WCO Council in 2005 to enhance facilitation and security of global trade. It works on the principle of compliance, trust and partnership whereby, economic operators that demonstrate compliance with customs supply chain security standards, are recognised as low-risk clients with whom customs enter into a partnership arrangement.
President of Seychelles tells SADC Summit that cooperation drives progress (Seychelles News Angency)
The values and principles of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) are guiding its members in the creation of a region in which cooperation, rather than conflict, drives progress, said President Wavel Ramkalawan of Seychelles in an address to the bloc's annual summit on Tuesday.
"Maritime security may seem to be a somewhat distant concept to some of us on the mainland. But let me reassure you all that the protection of our waters must be a concern to us all. The western Indian Ocean maritime route accounts for 12 percent of the global world trade and the protection of this important route means protecting our very livelihood," said Ramkalawan.
Ramkalawan said that the World Bank has estimated that the African Continental Free Trade Agreement will boost regional income by 7 percent or to the value of $450 billion. "In this regard, I am pleased to announce to this Summit that Seychelles is the latest SADC member to ratify the African Continental Free Trade Agreement. Being an import-dependent country, the agreement will be a positive tool to help us achieve our objectives, tackle inflation and lower the cost of living for our people," he added.
Zim keen to host medicines body (The Herald)
Zimbabwe is vying to host the African Medicines Authority (AMA), which is a specialised continental body that is envisaged to contribute to improved regulation of medicines, medical products and technologies, including promoting access to quality and efficacious drugs. Speaking on the sidelines of the 41st Summit of SADC Heads of State and Government in Lilongwe, Malawi, yesterday, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Ambassador Frederick Shava said the country wanted to “accommodate AMA”.
Farmers in Tanzania have benefited from rapid transformation, thanks to financial support from the African Development Fund to a national agricultural bank program. With the support, paddy rice farmers are reaping the benefits of improved access to farm inputs, including the supply of quality seeds and technology. “Nothing beats the power of a skilled, knowledgeable farmer who is equipped with the right information at the right time in the right season,” said Noelah Bomani-Ntukamazina, the Learning and Talent Development Manager at the Tanzania Agricultural Development Bank.
The Ghana Chamber of Mines is funding a study on the positioning of Ghana as the hub of mining support services in West Africa. In this direction, the Chamber has commenced a process to select a suitable consultant for the study.
Mr Eric Asubonteng, President of the Chamber, who announced this at a meeting with Parliament’s Mines and Energy Committee, said now was the time for Ghana to take its position to become a mining support services hub. Ghana is currently the leading gold producer on the continent, accounting for about a third of total gold production. He said the growth in mineral production in the sub-region provided Ghana with the advantage to become the hub of mining support services in West Africa. On building linkages, Mr Asubonteng said the Chamber recognized that the commercial relationships between the mining and non-mining sector had not been adequately researched.
In addition to export earnings, African countries aspire to derive greater economic value from their mineral resources. One of the most assured ways is through linkage development. Besides resource endowments, other critical factors include the international trade environment and its impact on a country’s ability to successfully leverage its competitive advantage. In view of this, a value chain analysis is a useful tool to define options and permit a more thorough assessment of policy trade-offs. It is within this context that the African Development Bank initiated a study of a group of minerals with immense significance for the future. This study assesses the opportunities and challenges of harnessing the Rare Earth Element (REE) value chain to contribute to both the global transition to a low carbon future and increased socioeconomic development across African countries.
The Goods Trade Barometer is a composite leading indicator providing real-time information on the trajectory of merchandise trade relative to recent trends ahead of conventional trade volume statistics. The latest barometer reading of 110.4 is the highest on record since the indicator was first released in July 2016, and up more than 20 points year-on-year.
Global goods trade has grown steadily since it registered a sharp decline in the second quarter of 2020 during the early days of the pandemic. The volume of merchandise trade was up 5.7% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2021, the largest jump since the 5.8% rise in third quarter of 2011. The latest barometer reading suggests that goods trade will see an even larger year-on-year increase in the second quarter once trade volume data for that period are available. The outlook for world trade continues to be overshadowed by downside risks, including regional disparities, continued weakness in services trade, and lagging vaccination timetables, particularly in poor countries. COVID-19 continues to pose the greatest threat to the outlook for trade, as new waves of infection could easily undermine the recovery